After 17 years in the professional peloton, Nicolas Vogondy has decided to end his career. Having been denied a new contract with the Wanty team that will replace his current Accent.jobs team, the 36-year-old hopes to continue his association with the cycling world.
The difficult rider market that has been created by the demise of five professional teams, has claimed its next victim. Former French champion Nicolas Vogondy wasn't offered a contract by Wanty-Groupe Gobert that will replace his current Accent.jobs team and has now taken the difficult decision to end his career.
Vogondy turned professional with Francaise des Jeux in 1997 and rode for most of the major French team during his long career. After 8 years with Francaise des Jeux, he joined Credit Agricole, Agritubel, Bouygues Telecom and Cofidis before he left his native France for the final season of his career.
"I had no news from them for some time," he said. "I left messages and they were unanswered, with time and experience, you know what that means. The answer fell last Friday.
"It is already the end of November, it's late, and all the teams are almost complete," he added. "I have had 17 years in the pros, I had a good time. I regret nothing. Now my phone is on, and if a team were to call me, I would look at what they have to offer, but I am under no illusions. I think the time has come to turn the page, to stop my career as a professional cyclist."
Vogondy won the French road race title twice and the time trial crown once. He took his biggest win on the mountain stage to Risoul in the 2010 Criterium du Dauphiné and went on to finish 6th in the race. However, he failed to return to that kind of strength later in his career.
He hopes to stay in the cycling world in the future.
"I'm going to take some time to think about what I can and want to do, based on my past experience in the professional world," he said. He may try to get a coaching license, but has also contacted Tour de France organizer ASO to explore any opportunities there.
Vogondy's final race was the Paris-Tours on October 13.
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